In this special interview, Jim Cornette tells the world what he really thinks of Vince Russo & Jerry Lawler.
Plus, the always colorful Cornette explains what talent has been misused by the WWF and why he left the Connecticut branch of the WWF for...Ohio Valley Wrestling.
It's an amazing read you can't afford to miss!
Here's an excerpt of the Jim Cornette interview...
Copyright Notice: This interview is Copyright © 2000Wrestling Perspective and may not be quoted, reprinted or distributed without written permission from Wrestling Perspective publishers Paul MacArthur and David Skolnick.
Wrestling Perspective: Are you surprised that Vince Russo and Eric Bischoff were brought back from the dead?
Jim Cornette: Actually, no. It’s a revolving door down there as you well know. They can’t manufacture any other people. You can’t just squat down and shit more people to run the company. They’ve gone through everybody once so now they’re revolving around a second time. They shut down one week. They should have shut down for six months. I mean it’s ludicrous. I saw Russo’s first show. I made a point to watch it because I knew that they were going to try to attempt a train wreck for two solid hours. I knew it was going to be a catastrophe. I’m surprised that a lot of people are saying, "Oh, this was great. This was great." You’ve got a guy out there who’s having a mental breakdown in front of your very eyes. He’s got the deer-caught-in-the-headlights stare. The pot belly on the gangly frame trying to walk like a bad ass with that New York accent carrying a baseball bat around, getting to beat up Ric Flair because he’s the guy who writes it. I was howling through the whole show. You’ve got Bischoff out there, who at least is a good television personality, just spin him nearly into the grave. The whole show and Russo’s whole thing, his whole life is based on can I get the Internet people to say I’m great? "Well, yeah, I can because I’ll do angles based on every locker room promo that the boys have cut on each other and inside shit that nobody out in Iowa knows what the hell is going on." He thinks that’s a great show because it’s unpredictable. There’s this fascination with shooting, but nobody believes it’s a shoot. When you do a poorly-done worked shoot, if that makes any sense at all, then all it does is devalue when you do have something that’s legitimate. I’m just amazed. The guy’s cutting promos on everybody. Come on, be serious. Vince Russo cutting promos on Jim Ross like he’s a talentless buffoon. If Vince Russo could get close enough to Jim Ross to smell his exhaust in this business he’d be lucky as far as talent, as far as respect, as far as any measuring stick you might have. It’s just ludicrous. He’s out there. He’s like a little kid having a temper tantrum cutting promos on all the guys who have kept his genius hidden all these years. The savior of wrestling and now he’s finally unleashed and ready to turn loose on the world. He’s having a mental fucking breakdown in front of your very eyes. A lot of people, I was surprised, some did see it, but a lot more didn’t see it.
WP: How long before people start calling for his head?
JC: In the company, I don’t know. I think the general fan base, already the letters are past 50 percent against or as we say down here again. "We’re again him." Whereas before, it was like, "He’s the greatest guy," because he markets himself to the smart fans, to the Internet fans. That’s the only feedback he can get. He is a desperately glory-starved attention hound. Since he can’t go out and get cheers or boos from the live crowd, he has to get his positive or negative feedback from the Internet, mostly positive is what he wants. Now he’s put himself in a position where he actually going out and getting the cheers and boos, but they’re not boos from heat. They’re not boos from somebody beat this guy up. They’re boos from "Jesus Christ, we’ve got to listen to this yahoo again?" Look at him. At least buy a God damn shirt. It’s sad that the company is in such critical condition that they will allow a second-rate writer who can’t even spell and who comes up with three or four good ideas out of the buckshot principle of booking for every 20 that he throws out there and now he’s the top star in the company. He’s beating up a 14-time world champion with a baseball bat. Bischoff’s out there running people over with Humvees. My God, they’re just basically trying to make themselves into the next Abbott and Costello or whatever fucking famous duo there might be in show business so they can get a job when this thing goes to hell in a hand basket again.
WP: It looks like they’re trying to take off on the whole McMahon concept.
JC: Sure and it’s the same as any other outlaw promotion that has Smoky Maivia instead of Rocky Maivia. If you smell what the smoke is cooking. It goes all the way back to Jack Pfeffer and Bruno Sanmartino. Take something that works and copy it, but since you don’t have the ability, the intelligence, the creativity, etcetera, etcetera, it’s going to come off half-ass and minor league and silly and whatever. There’s nobody there to stop them. I don’t know what your opinion is, but I hope you can see a couple of things there. The fucking guy is out of control. If you see the look on his face, he’s self-destructing. As a matter of fact, Kevin Sullivan, God bless him, I love Kevin to death. I’ve always had a good time around Kevin. He had a phrase years ago, he wasn’t mentioning Russo, this is 10 years ago he used to tell me this about people. "You see when they’re under pressure, the point. The point comes when their eyes scrunch up and their nose scrunches up and their hairline comes down and their forehead comes out in a point." And I’m looking at this guy protesting how he was wronged by all these people who kept him down and hid his genius from the world and I’m seeing the fucking point coming out. He’s fucking cracking up and he got himself into the fucking mess. When he got sent home, he realized he was being exposed to basically the world that he helms the ship for three months and it sinks even further. The only reason it went farther after he left was that it was in such a state of disarray anyway. It was falling apart at the seams. Nobody was over. So what do they do? They shut down for a week and now let’s have a calm, sensible thought process about this. Who’s too old? Who ain’t playing for the team? Who’s not showing up? Who’s not cooperating? Move them out. Who has the talent? Who’s young? Who needs a little kick in the ass to get them up to the next level? Let’s start positioning them. Let’s think about six months from now. We’ll have guys over such as the WWF does. We’ll have guys that the people respond to. No, he wants to do it all in one night and make a big mess, a big train wreck because that’s his way of thinking. You cannot shove people or situations down the fans’ throats like that because they look at it and maybe it was two hours of entertaining television to some people, but they can’t remember a God damn thing that happened except maybe for some of them Shane Douglas finally got a chance to beat up Ric Flair. For the 98 percent of the population that doesn’t know that was a program they’re going, "What the fuck?" That’s my whole thing. He just won’t slow down and think and plot and plan and apply himself in an orderly manner. He’s got to go out there and run into a wall every God damn time. Especially this time because after he got sent home once, if he didn’t come up with a train wreck on this one then the Internet wouldn’t say, "Oh, thank God, Russo’s back." It’s no different. You can artificially make the show different. You can make the show look a little more exciting. You can make it look different because different people are wrestling. But it’s not going to be any different in basis of profitability or interest for months and months of careful work.
WP: And they’ve got the wrong people there for that.
JC: They don’t have the diamond cutters, they’ve got the weed eaters.
WP: Were you surprised when they sent Russo home the first time?
JC: Well, he certainly got what everybody with a brain knew that he’d get. I don’t know whether you read Mike Mooneyham’s column, but basically he called me when Russo was first hired and asked me, "Well, what do you think will happen?" I told him what I thought would happen and lo and behold, the only thing I was wrong about was it didn’t take Russo as long as I thought it would to screw the whole company up. The same thing happened three months before I thought it would. That just points out that I should be running WCW, I guess because I’m smarter than the fucking people who are doing it. But that’s not a compliment. That’s like being the nicest guys in prison. Anybody who knows anything about wrestling, who knows anything about Russo, knew what was going to take place.
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